Ohshima at the 2018 Game Developers Conference
|Born||February 26, 1964|
|Other names||Creator of Sonic|
|Occupation||Character designer, game producer|
Naoto Ohshima (大島 直人 Ōshima Naoto) (born February 26, 1964) is a Japanese artist who is best known for designing the Sonic the Hedgehog and Dr. Eggman characters from Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog video game franchise.
Although Yuji Naka created the original tech demo around which Sonic's gameplay was based, the character in his prototype was a ball that lacked any specific features. Sonic Team considered numerous potential animal mascots before deciding on Ohshima's design, with an armadillo or hedgehog being the top choices because their spikes worked well with the concept of rolling into enemies.
After leaving Sonic Team, Ohshima formed an independent game company called Artoon. There he went on to work on such games as Pinobee and Blinx: The Time Sweeper, and in 2004, the sequel to Blinx, Blinx 2: Masters of Time & Space. In 2010, Artoon was absorbed into AQ Interactive. That same year, he and other key members of Artoon left to form Arzest. Early in his career, he was credited under the nickname "Big Island" in a number of games, which is a literal translation of his family name.
- Phantasy Star (1987) – Designer
- Space Harrier 3-D (1988) – Artist
- SpellCaster (1988) – Designer
- Phantasy Star II (1989) – Designer
- Tommy Lasorda Baseball (1989) – Designer
- Last Battle (1989) – Art director
- Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) – Character design
- Fatal Labyrinth (1991) – Designer
- Sonic CD (1993) – Director
- Knuckles' Chaotix (1995) – Original character concept
- Sonic 3D Blast (1996) – Advisor
- Nights into Dreams... (1996) – Director, character designer
- Christmas Nights (1996) – Director, character designer
- Sonic R (1997) – Graphic advisor
- Sonic Jam (1997) – Supervisor
- Burning Rangers (1998) – Director, character designer, artist
- Sonic Adventure (1998) – Designer
- Pinobee: Wings of Adventure (2001) – Director
- The King of Fighters EX: Neo Blood (2002) – Art director
- Ghost Vibration (2002) – Game designer
- Blinx: The Time Sweeper (2002) – Director
- Blinx 2: Masters of Time and Space (2004) – Director
- Yoshi's Universal Gravitation (2004) – Producer
- Yoshi's Island DS (2006) – Senior producer
- Blue Dragon (2006) – Executive producer
- Vampire Rain (2007) – Producer
- Away: Shuffle Dungeon (2008) – Character designer
- FlingSmash (2010) – Senior producer
- Yoshi's New Island (2014) – Development producer
- Terra Battle (2015) – Character designer
- Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games (2016) – Supervisor
- Hey! Pikmin (2017) – Development producer
- Sheffield, Brandon (2009-12-04). "Out of the Blue: Naoto Ohshima Speaks". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2014-07-21.
- "The Essential 50 Part 28 - Sonic the Hedgehog". 1UP.com. Archived from the original on March 28, 2017. Retrieved 2014-07-21.
- "Sonic's Architect: GI Interviews Hirokazu Yasuhara". Game Informer. 13 (124): 114–116. August 2003.
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